Sports Ticker 9 – Fury, NASCAR and Sky Sports pause

Published on 31 March 2020

Welcome to the latest edition of the RPC Sports Ticker - providing fortnightly bite-size updates from around the sports industry.

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Firstly, we hope this edition finds you well and that you, your family and friends are staying healthy and adjusting to the new norm. In a fortnight that has seen unprecedented measures put in place to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, we provide an overview of the implications on major sporting events in Extra Time, alongside other sporting updates from the past two weeks, including Tyson Fury’s battle with a farmer, a new iRacing eSports league and the NFL’s new collection bargaining agreement.

As always, if there are any areas you'd like more information on (or if you have any questions or feedback), please let us know or get in touch with your usual RPC contact.

1. Fury on the ropes after farmer makes bribery claims

Tyson Fury is back in the spotlight after a farmer has reportedly admitted to having lied to the UK Anti-Doping Agency (UKAD), to assist Fury and his cousin Hughie.

2. iRacing gets the green flag as NASCAR introduce new eSports league

 In response to the postponement of a number of NASCAR races, NASCAR has teamed up with iRacing to create the eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series.

3. NFL approves new Collective Bargaining Agreement

 NFL players and owners have narrowly voted to approve a new collective bargaining agreement (CBA) which will run until 2030, with the NFL Players Association's membership reportedly passing the deal by a slim margin, with 1,019 players voting in favour and 959 voting against.

4. Pause Sky Sports subscription due to COVID-19

 With almost all major UK sporting events being cancelled or postponed due to COVID-19, Sky Sports customers will be allowed to pause their subscriptions without charge.

5. COVID-19, Euro-2021?

 With leagues across Europe suspended as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, UEFA has taken an unparalleled step in prioritising domestic seasons by agreeing to postpone the Euros until 2021.



Extra time...

And finally… as mentioned above, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic continues to make waves across the world of sports, causing matches and major sporting events to be delayed or cancelled, and significant action being taken to curb losses as a result. To pick a few examples:

  • the World Athletics Indoor Championships have been postponed, as has Tokyo 2020, and Euro 2020. 
  • all elite men's and women's professional football in England has been postponed until no earlier than 30th April. 
  • the Leeds round of the World Triathlon Series has been postponed, with an update on an alternative date scheduled to be announced by the end of April. 
  • both the World Athletics Indoor Championships and the Formula One Grand Prix have been cancelled. 
  • Premiership Rugby clubs (currently around 7) have implemented wage cuts to ease the financial burden on them as they seek to weather the storm.
  • The Ryder Cup is still currently scheduled for September, although some participants have spoken out in favour of delaying the event.

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